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MPGs with 2023 Hybrids

8107 Views 133 Replies 32 Participants Last post by  JeffJo
As I've gotten used to driving a hybrid, I've found it quite interesting how driving habits seem to impact fuel economy in ways I didn't initially expect. I likely will not change my driving style in the interest of maximizing fuel economy over time, but in the past week or two have paid a bit more attention to check if my 23 touring model is in the expected MPG range. So far it definitely is with my average in the 42-44 range with mixed city and highway miles. But with some caveats ...

If you truly push the car non-stop very aggressively, yes fuel economy suffers and you'll be lucky to be in the 30s especially if you're in a hilly area. No surprise there. But ... on the flip side if you drive the car very conservatively as if you were trying to conserve gas (as I would in any other traditional ICE), fuel economy also seems to suffer. That is, If I gently accelerate to desired speed with light pressure on the accelerator, the engine is on the entire time fueling either the battery or the drive motor, and the direct drive clutch is not engaged until you get to desired speed. Fuel economy suffers this entire time. However, if I accelerate more briskly to desired speed - whether it's 40, 50, 60, 70, whatever - then settle into that speed, the engine turns off and you're EV, or the direct drive clutch engages for higher MPGs. Maybe this is old news for hybrid owners, but I found it quite interesting. And I've found it very useful to use regenerative breaking to both charge the battery and save the brakes. In a few short weeks, driving a different car that doesn't have this feature is suddenly odd! I really like that feature. Regardless, it's been refreshing that in my limited experience more aggressive driving actually seems to yield better MPGs!

Curious if others have noticed this?
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I drive mostly highway between 75-80 mph and I am hardly touching 35 mpg. My regular camry would give 32 MPG. I don't think it's worth to upgrade from a MPG perspective.
Alex On Autos has an interesting discussion of this in his recent review of the new CR-V hybrid:
He mentions that when the EPA measures fuel economy, they average something like 45 or 50 MPH, so manufacturers tune their cars to ace that test. He says that non-hybrids might get better fuel economy for someone who regularly drives 75.
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